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Robert Young Pelton’s World Worsts

ryp

Name Robert Young Pelton
Who? Filmmaker, speaker, and author of The World’s Most Dangerous Places, Come Back Alive and Licensed to Kill. He has traveled alongside the Taliban, CIA, Blackwater and too many rebel groups to list.  And he’s  the only travel writer with his own signature survival knife! (ratcutlery.com)  More at comebackalive.com
Age 53
Countries Visited 120+

Titanic Nominations
1. Least Civilized Militants The Small Boys Unit I was with in Liberia was run by a 15-year-old who had three or four girlfriends and always smoked a huge spliff. These guys (mostly 10 – 12 year olds) like to cut the enemy to pieces after they were dead. Not very sporting chaps.
2. Worst Jungle Darian Gap. Very dry, hot and thorny. At the time I was kidnapped, getting marched at night (at gun point), so you fall a lot  and the spikes on the trees you grab to catch yourself would go right into you. I was literally unhooking these tines from my hand.
3. Worst Military Food French MREs. You’d think they’d have this gourmet stuff, but they had  two dozen flavors of greasy southern French crap that even the peasants wouldn’t touch.
4. Worst Spot for Getting Mugged Jo’burg, South Africa. It was worst in that no one would mug me. I put a camera on my neck and timed it because this was supposed to be some great spot for getting mugged. But I was just approached by really friendly locals telling me I probably shouldn’t stand there with a camera on my neck.
5. Worst Toilet In Mali I asked where the toilet was… they pointed outside. There is a lot of outside in Mali. Huts and then sand as far as you could see.  And they didn’t go inside the huts.  So everywhere was the toilet. I was just supposed to wander out into the sand and find a spot inbetween everyone else’s shit and go. With everyone watching. And you know everyone wants to see how the white guy goes to the toilet.

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  1. July 7th, 2009 at 02:52 | #1

    Too Funny- the world is my toilet.

    Reminded me of my own walk-in toilet experience on the Kenai River, combat fishing. The guide put me on the bank of the only stopping spot around. Inside this “thicket” the toilet paper covered the ground and dangled from the shrubs and some even hung from the branches overhead. Don’t know why, not sure I want to know. Smelled lovely. Unforgettable Alaska.

  2. Garry
    May 12th, 2010 at 20:08 | #2

    That’s funny Eva Gill.

    If I’m thinking of the same place on the Kenai (the place with the small cable “ferry”), that thicketed area is a hiding spot for black and brown bears looking for a free salmon or two from the folks who are fishing on the river bank. I have even read stories about guys unloading shotguns at attacking bears right on that very spot. A guy was bitten on the butt by one at the nearby Cooper Landing campground.

    Your toilet paper description is the …. errrr…. icing on the cake.

  3. Beda Warrick
    June 14th, 2010 at 22:01 | #3

    ^ Ah…tourists in Alaska go combat fishing.

    Tip from a long-time local: This, my friends, is why you pay more money for a fly in fishing trip to the bush. More of a true Alaskan ‘commune with nature’ sort of experience…and alot less stinky to boot. After all, the whole point of Alaska is to get away from people. So why go fishing on the Kenai? Seriously.

    Anyway, regarding Robert’s list – my least favorite toilet is not the mud hut I used in Uzbekistan…not the many trees I used in Alaska…and not the roadside communal squat & dump I used in China.

    No…the worst was a lot closer to home, in Tijuana, Mexico. I’d rather go in the great outdoors than the bathroom I was directed to in one of the liquor stores I visited there. At least the great outdoors gets rained on occasionally, whereas this bathroom hadn’t seen the business end of a sponge in decades. 17 years later, and I still get the dry heaves just thinking about it.

  4. September 17th, 2011 at 02:43 | #4

    Yep~ never went back to the Kenai. I have since done the fly out in a float plane adventures… much, much nicer.

    I have an even better toilet experience (or rather worse) this year. HCMC (Saigon) in one of the big markets (not one tourists typically go to.) We were having Pho at one of the little food stands, and my daughter and I needed to “go.” My lovely Vietnamese niece asked about a bathroom and translated the directions. She was in stitches when we came back. One upon a time there had been stalls in the restroom with squatties. These were used for storing stuff. There was a large basin of water with plastic buckets. You toss some water on the tile floor and pee in the puddle you’ve made, then wash it down with a little more water. (Standing in the pee puddle, of course.)A real life walk in toilet! The we walked back around the corner into the food stands, feet drying of our pee on the way, to finish our noodles. Yum!

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  1. August 28th, 2009 at 12:00 | #1